As quickly as we learned that Joe Biden had classified documents kept in his private office at the Penn Biden Center in Washington, D.C., the usual suspects in the liberal media came rushing to his defense, trying to distinguish his classified documents scandal from Donald Trump’s. And, as you might expect, they all insisted that Trump’s scandal was worse.
But it has become increasingly apparent that the opposite is true. Here are five reasons why.
1. Biden had no authority to declassify the documents
According to Kash Patel, a former top Trump administration official, President Trump “declassified whole sets of materials in anticipation of leaving government that he thought the American public should have the right to read themselves.” Also, on January 19, 2021, President Trump released a presidential memorandum titled “Memorandum on Declassification of Certain Materials Related to the FBI’s Crossfire Hurricane Investigation.” So, clearly, there’s documentation of the process showing that, at the very least, documents related to Crossfire Hurricane were, in fact, declassified.
Biden can’t claim to have declassified the documents he had. The Federal Records Act says that only the president can declassify documents, not the vice president. So, unless Barack Obama comes forward and says he declassified the documents found in Biden’s office and home, then these documents were never declassified.
2. The National Archives didn’t know about the Biden docs
The FBI knew where they were and had advised Trump’s lawyers to add more security to the room where they were being stored.
The White House and Joe Biden have been carefully pointing out that they are cooperating with the National Archives and the Justice Department, and that they were informed of the discovery immediately—which tells us that the National Archives wasn’t even aware that Biden had the documents. That’s quite troubling.
3. Biden’s documents were in multiple locations
All indications are that Trump was in possession of classified documents he had sent to Mar-a-Lago, placed in a secure room, and left untouched.
When then-Vice President Biden left office in January 2017, the classified materials were likely brought to his house. Some classified documents, however, were found at his private office at the Penn Biden Center, which didn’t officially open its doors until more than a year later, on February 8, 2018. Based on this timeline, it seems likely that the classified documents that were found in Biden’s office at the Penn Biden Center may have come from the cache that was found in his garage, and someone had to specifically remove them from the cache at his house and take them to his office.
4. Biden’s documents weren’t stored securely
Trump did keep documents at Mar-a-Lago, and while they may not have been stored according to the standards set by the National Archives for the security and storage of classified documents.
According to reports, the documents found in his Penn Biden Center office were in a locked office, but what kind of security was in place? It is unlikely that his office met the standards of the National Archives—which was unaware of the documents being in Biden’s possession.
But even if we assumed that they were properly secure in that location, more documents were found in Biden’s garage. Biden shrugged this off by saying that his garage was locked, but would anyone argue that they were stored according to NARA standards? You can see the garage yourself in this 2020 campaign video of Biden showing off the Corvette he personally acknowledged was kept in the garage with the classified documents:
There’s been a lot of talk about my vetting process lately. Here’s an inside look: pic.twitter.com/tFRKJOE3hi
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) August 5, 2020
In addition to that, in 2015, it was reported that Biden’s home security system was so prone to failure that it was switched off. Trump’s home had Secret Service security. But former vice presidents don’t get Secret Service protection, so between the time Biden left the vice presidency in 2017 and the time he took office in 2021, those documents were not properly secured.
5. Biden’s documents appear to be sensitive in nature
Of course, we all remember the ridiculous claim that Trump had kept “nuclear secrets” at Mar-a-Lago. But those allegations never panned out (as expected). According to a report from the Washington Post, a review by federal agents and prosecutors did not find “any apparent business advantage to the types of classified information in Trump’s possession” and that FBI interviews with witnesses “do not point to any nefarious effort by Trump to leverage, sell or use the government secrets.”
The classified documents found in Biden’s office at the Penn Biden Center in November, however, were marked “sensitive compartmented information,” or SCI. This meant that the documents came from intelligence sources and were related to Ukraine, Iran, and the United Kingdom.